Policeman who rolled the demonstrator’s bike over the head is blocked

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A Seattle police officer who rolled his bicycle over the head of a protester was sentenced to seven days without pay.

The suspension came after the city’s watchdog group found he used prohibited violence for reasons of discretion and professionalism and violated the department’s regulations, the Seattle Times reported.

The official, whose name has not been released by the Seattle Police Department, is appealing the results of the city’s police accountability bureau.

A department spokesman on Wednesday did not know whether the officer had served the suspension, but said he had been reassigned “back to patrol”.

Andrew Myerberg, director of the Office of Police Accountability, said Wednesday the officer’s recommended suspension was “at the high end of discipline” compared to similar cases.

The September 2020 incident was videotaped and drew national attention at protest posts in Seattle and cities across the country after a grand jury decided not to charge officers in Louisville, Kentucky, with the murder of Breonna Taylor.

Videos from the Seattle protest showed a protester later identified as Camillo Massagli lying on the ground and the officer walking over his head on his bicycle before a line of officers pushed protesters back.

A King County Sheriff’s detective investigating the officer for assault found no likely cause given that he and other officers had the right to remove protesters from the streets that night.

The Seattle City Attorney‘s Office examined the case and declined to bring charges before OPA opened its investigation.

The official told OPA investigators that by the time a captain ordered officers to disperse an unruly crowd, both tires of the bike were flat, released this week, says.

The officer said “he must stay on his line and cannot move as this could confuse officers following behind him,” claiming he lifted his bike over the protester and denied deliberately rolling it over Massagli.

But the OPA’s review of the videos found “no indication that he ever lifted the bike while walking over the protester”. The videos also showed that there was plenty of space to simply bypass the protesters, the executive summary said.

“In addition, the OPA sees no credible claim that rolling over a person lying on the ground with the wheels of a bicycle – flat or not – is appropriate violence in the sense of the SPD policy,” says the summary of the investigation.

A disciplinary committee recommended the seven-day ban, and Provisional Police Chief Adrian Diaz agreed and formally notified the officer of the ban on November 5.

Mike Solan, president of the Seattle Police Officers Guild, said in an email on Wednesday that the police union had made no comment at the time.


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